Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Fontana Dam!

Hey y'all. (notice my southern accent lol) Had an awesome few days of hiking and then hanging out here at the Fontana Village Resort before I head out for the Great Smoky Mountain National Park. I stayed in the Fontana Hilton, a shelter very near to the dam the night before last. It was a huge shelter and even had running water which means showers! I met up with two good buddies I've met on the trail, Tang and Muscadine right as I was coming into Fontana. I was glad to see them because Moe (Ryan), Cherry pie and Millie had to jump ahead to Hot Springs, because dogs aren't allowed in the smokies. I also ran into DQ who's been on pretty much the same hiking schedule as I've been so we will hit the smokies together. This will be the longest I've gone so far without going into town for resupply or anything of the sort. A week straight. I'm very much looking forward to it and hope the weather holds up and stays semi warm. Rain is not a hikers friend, unless its just drizzle I can deal with that. Anyone who would like to write me or send me packages ;) let me know I'll tell ya where I'll be next. Wish me and the crew luck! Much love much love.
P.s. I've been able to keep up with Game Of Thrones! I somehow end up in a town every Sunday haha. Praise the old gods and the new!

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Franklin NC ( Mile 109.8)

Well I'm mostly certainly alive and walking forward. I'm currently sitting in the Haven Budget Inn in Franklin, NC. It's pretty funny how low your standards of comfort can drop after being in the mountains for awhile. Typically I'd give this place one look and bounce to find another, its interesting to say the least. I'll start with the bad news, Nick now trail named Admiral Caboose, has to leave the trail and go back home to California for his great grandmothers funeral. I'm gonna miss the kid like crazy, he was my main hiking buddy. I'm too used to hiking to a spot pulling over and resting waiting for Nick to catch up so we could talk about Lord of the Rings or Harry Potter, amongst other things. We mainly just quote the former two at each other, makes for a great time. Ryan who's trail name is Casper, Kylee who is Cherry Pie, and Millie are about a day ahead of me but only by about four miles so I'll catch them tomorrow. I've become a member of a large hiker bubble around 20 people who I hike with from time to time depending on our paces and camp with every night. We've all grown pretty close and its like our little family is moving down the trail. I've actually met two other redditors and they are both in my group Odysseus and Nick. Pretty crazy finding that out together haha. Trail magic! I got it twice in a two day span. First we had hotdogs, hamburgers, beers, and cookies from a former thru hiker, Breeze, and his buddies, it was just the fuel I needed to press on. The next day I got soda a sloppy Joe hotdog and fruit. I was feeling pretty good after that which is when I made my ascent up to Albert Mountain and reached my 100 miles on the AT. About 2 days ago I passed through Georgia and into North Carolina. That was an awesome experience. Last night in town was pretty crazy. Our huge group first took over a motel, then a restaurant which had Karaoke, Tang got down on some guns and roses had the whole place cheering. Then we moved on and took over a bar. Everyone was pretty drunk and a lot of us woke up hungover today lol. I had to but some new shoes while here at Outdoor 76. If your in Franklin and thru hiking I highly recommend that you stop by there, especially if you need new shoes the staff is amazing. This guy literally sat down and taught me all about my feet for around an hour. I was wearing a size 11 and now I'm in a 12.5! Plus they have a bar in there! So I was sipping on a beet getting the low down on feet. Haha my first beer was free because a guy chilling at the bar was buying thru hikers first drinks. Score! I also got a new water filter. Hiking has been amazing and I can feel my body constantly getting into better shape. We did a 20 mile day into Franklin which is pretty hardcore for the section we are hiking. I was told by the guy who gave me better shoes that I need to slow it down if I want to make it to Maine so I will. The most I'll do for now is twelve. There hasn't been much scenery change except for some small pockets where you feel like you're in the jungle. Well I'm checking out for now more updates coming soon. Check my instagram for pictured I update that more frequently. @SasquatchStalkr

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Mile outside Dicks Creek Gap.

A lot has happened since my last update. I don't really know where to start. From Neel gap we hiked for the entire day and were greeted by beautiful views, and big mountains to climb up and down. We set up shelter about an hour before sunlight, we just judge time out here by the position of the sun so its not completely accurate lol. That night was the worst yet we were hit by a major thunderstorm and all our gear was completely soaked. My tarp wasn't hugging my hammock so I got soaked and just sat there until first light to get up and get moving. Sucked. We all decided we should get into town and dry out our gear. So we got a shuttle to Helen. Helen is a little German like town in the middle of nowhere Georgia. Well middle of nowhere to me. We took a zero day and cruised around the awesome little city, we grabbed some German beers and I met some more thru hikers, specifically Brave who I've talked to about the AT over instagram. We all got to hangout and chat about the trail which was super cool I was stoked to meet her. As we were checking out Ryan tied Millie to a metal table outside, she moved and the sound it made spooked her so she ran away and dragged the table around with her, about ten people were I'm the lobby watching. Dying laughing. We set out from Helen and have been on the trail other than to stop in Hiawassee and resupply and get some 7$ all you can eat BBQ. :) now we will be on trail for about 3 days until Franklin. I'll probably update again there because my phone is almost dead. Tomorrow is the GA NC state line! Wish us good health and happy trails! Check my instagram for pictures. @SasquatchStalkr

Saturday, April 5, 2014

Woody Gap to Neel Gap.

I'm in love with the Appalachian trail. Everything about it is so unique, and inviting. You could hike this trail 100 times and something new and awesome would happen every dang time. This morning I woke up in the beautiful little town of Suches, GA population 900 ( Which I was told by the kind woman who ran the hostel and gave us a ride back to the trail.) I cut down on some weight then we head out to eat some breakfast at a barn looking establishment across the street. We walk onto the balcony to leave and see about 20 Ferraris. Really crazy, all super nice. I guess these Northern Georgia roads are really nice to cruise down, one because its beautiful, two no one to pull you over. We had breakfast scrumptious biscuts and gravy. Then got a lift to woody gap and hit the trail. We got off to a good start and only breaked a few times for water and a breather. I broke ahead and waited for the crew at Jarrard Gap. I ate my hickory smoked tuna. Which is damn good and put on some moleskin for my blisters. Everyone pulled up and we prepared to hit Blood Mountain, the second highest point on the Appalachian Trail. Now I'm sure its a combination of things but for some reason the hike up blood wasn't as hard as some make it to be. We were up pretty quick snapped some pictures and then started to head down to get into Neel Gap. Now the descent from Blood is what was harsh if anything, a lot of rock and a lot of steep decline. My knees are felling it haha. We hiked into Neel at about 5:45 right before the store closed. We grabbed some quick food and now are camped right up Levelland Mountain so we can shoot back into Neel tomorrow and get a pack shake down and pick up some supplies. Actually might just skip the shakedown seeing as we kinda already know what we need and want that time to hike. As of now I'm laying in my hammock right above Nicks hammock. Got the rain fly up,and chilling in my sleeping bag. Its balls cold outside but I'm pretty toasty. Meet a lot of awesome thru hikers today, and just people day hiking. Tomorrow we are hiking to low gap shelter. In total we have done 40.5 miles.looking Forward to tomorrow. Now I need to get some rest for the long day tomorrow. Live long and prosper.

Friday, April 4, 2014

Springer to Suches. + Approach Trail.

We got on to the approach trail late Tuesday around 6pm we hiked about 2 hours in and then set up camp. Gezi, Ryan's friend who drove up with us stayed the night and then split ways and head back to Amicalola while we set out for Springer. We hit Springer around mid afternoon stopped for a nice break and got our first trail magic, beer! Met someone who I've followed on instagram because if the AT I'm blanking on her name right now bit she has an awesome dog! We head down to Stover Creek shelter which Is 2.8 miles into the Appalachian Trail. My first shelter experince was pretty awesome meet a couple of cool guys one of which, spot, has hiked the Appalachian Trail 5 Times!! He's a beast because all of these thru hikes have been in his 60's. Crazy inspiration right there. Nick and I slept in the shelter on the top level. Ryan and Kylie slept in their hammocks. Nick swears a mouse nibbled on his finger but I think he was half way between being asleep and awake hahaha. We got up the next morning packed up our gear, got our bear bags, most shelters in Georgia have bear bags which is nice. We had a long day of hard hiking 12 miles in total. We set up camp at Justus Creek which is 14.3 miles into the AT. Really awesome location right next, what do ya know a creek. Our water filter went to crap here. Pissin me off haha luckily we have a steripen. From Justus Creek we hiked to Woody Gap were we went to our first hostel. In Suches, GA. This place is pretty awesome. Very small town not even a town really a gas station and peoples houses the hostel is a part of the gas station. Had the best burger in awhile downstairs and doing some laundry. Now I'm chillin in my bunk, gonna take a shower pretty soon here and settle down. Might eat some more lol. Tomorrow we shoot for Neel's Gap which means blood mountain. Northern Georgia is absolutely gorgeous. The most beautiful place I've been ever in my life. I highly recommend everyone check this out. Ryan just smelled another thru hikers shirt hahahaha alright guys I'm checking out for now. Good night. Oh yeah I'm three hours ahead of California here in Georgia.

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

The Day of Reckoning.

I'm in the car with Ryan's good friend Gezi, awesome guy , and Nick. Ryan and Kylie are in the car ahead. We're crusin should be to the approach trail in around two hours. I'm freaking out. In the best possible way of course. I'd like to thank everybody for their support! It's about to get real so stay updated, or not I'll be enjoying myself nonetheless, and that's what it's all about. Peace out big dawgs, XOXOxoxo ( big kiss big hug, big kiss big hug, little kiss, little hug, little kiss little hug.)

P.S. Georgia is beautiful, tree lined highways with huge houses on lots of land. I really question why anybody would want to live in California when there are places like this. I haven't even started yet... I'm bout to be mind blown.